Truck Driver Alcohol and Drug Abuse
Truck drivers with a commercial driver license (CDL) are subject to alcohol and drug tests, as are truck owner-operators with a CDL. A study by the Insurance Institute for Traffic Safety found that 15% of all drivers had marijuana, 12% had non-prescription stimulants, 5% had prescription stimulants, 2% had cocaine, and less than 1% had alcohol in their systems.
Semi truck drivers do not have to be intoxicated to be impaired by alcohol. Even at low blood alcohol levels, alcohol impairs driving performance by reducing the semi trucker driver's reaction time and slowing their decision making. Recognizing the dangers associated with drinking and driving by truck drivers, the Federal government prohibits commercial semi truck drivers from driving with a blood alcohol level at or greater than 0.04%.
Current statistics show that only about 1% to 3% of semi truck accidents are caused by alcohol use by the truck driver.
While many drivers believe that drugged driving is safer than drunk driving, in reality, many drugs including marijuana do affect reaction time, concentration, and perception.
The National Transportation Safety Board studied 182 fatal truck accidents and found that 12.5% of the accidents were caused by drivers using marijuana.
Despite Federal regulations that limit the hours a trucker driver may drive in a single day, they are constantly looking for ways to stay awake longer and drive farther. The use of stimulants by truck drivers to combat fatigue is fairly common. The National Institute on Drug Abuse says that semi truck drivers are increasingly using methamphetamines to work long hours and improve mental alternateness and endurance.
Semi truck drivers are responsible for the safe operation of their tractor trailer on our highways. While more stringent alcohol laws have helped to curb drunk driving other illicit drug use by trucker drivers is on the rise.
Commercial trucking presents dangers that the drivers of passenger cars may never face. Although truckers make every effort to be safe in their operations, there are various things that make commercial trucking hazardous. Some of the more common causes of trucking accidents in Oklahoma are listed below. If you are injured in a commercial trucking accident, you need to consult an Oklahoma attorney with experience in handling truck accident cases.
Contact us today if you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a truck accident by using the form on your left or by calling us toll-free at 1 (866) 664-0400 for a FREE case review.
We can handle your potential legal case if you are in any of these states or cities. Even if your city is not listed you may still speak with one of our truck accident attorneys by filling out our contact form or calling us toll-free at 1 (866) 664-0400.
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